Local Volunteers Prepare To Leave For Haiti (Update)
A group of university doctors, nurses and support staff from North Central Florida are heading to Haiti to bring some relief and calm to a country that's been rocked to it's core.
Doctor Micheal Perri, dean at the college of public health and health professions, said a Haitian community just outside Port-au-Prince called the University of Florida looking for help.
"They've put out a call to us saying you know if you can come down with personnel and with supplies we could sure use it because they were running out of supplies and personnel and almost all the buildings in the community have been devastated," Perri said.
This trip to Haiti has special meaning for Edsel Reeden. He's part of a missionary there, which helps feed over a thousand of the country's children every day.
"80 percent of our buildings are on the ground," Reeden said.
The earthquake not only damaged many of his mission's buildings, but the lives of those he serves.
"They've had some die, young," Reeden said. "Most of the ones that have deid at our center have been young children. Huge lacerations, broken bones actually they've had amputations."
Reeden said he was in talks with the university before the earthquake to help the people of Haiti, and with recent developments, the partnership quickly formed.
"That was our ongoing project and then obviously having that already started really helped us to get some more involvement with the university as it relates to this disaster," Reeden said.
Stories and video taken there show a country in ruins. Homes destroyed. Lives lost. People in peril.
But through, the generosity of local workers who are packing their bags and supplies, the real story now isn't about what happened. It's about moving forward.
"We've been real lucky in terms of university been very supportive," Reeden said. "Shands has been supportive in donating both supplies and medications."
The group is planning on staying in Haiti for 10 days.
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